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AlexLegault

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So I've got a meeting tomorrow with my first potential client and I'm not sure how to approach it or how the process goes.

It's going to be my first sales meeting (I went for one today but my mentor/boss basically did it for me) and I don't want to seem like I don't know what I'm doing.

Do you guys have any tips on how you would go from meeting the client to closing?

Is it as simple as just figuring out what they want by asking them questions and giving them that or is there more to it?
 

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Don't over think it...

Have the mindset that you're doing them a favor and providing a solution that they need. It doesn't matter if they know it or not, just have a casual conversation about what you can do and focus on building the relationship.

Try not to talk too much, let them do the talking and break their weak points down, and then address their points and how you can help them.
 

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Make it as conversational as possible... Make it very clear you want to find a way to create value for him/her and work together to find that win-win mutually advantageous sweet spot where everyone goes home happy. Be open to concessions, reasonable and easy to work with. You will be surprised how easy sales can be when you are just open, honest, and look at things from their perspective.

Formal presentations done incorrectly can make you look like a chump. Off the cuff is better 90 percent of the time. It keeps you agile and arguably better prepared.

Best of luck! I hope this helps.
 

GPM

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Don't pretend like you know everything when you actually don't. If he asks you something and you actually don't know just say "That is a really great question. I would love to look in to that for you and I will have an answer for you soon". Then actually find out the information and get it to them as soon as you can.

BS comes off as false and will kill any future interactions in a heartbeat.
 

Roli

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So I've got a meeting tomorrow with my first potential client and I'm not sure how to approach it or how the process goes.

It's going to be my first sales meeting (I went for one today but my mentor/boss basically did it for me) and I don't want to seem like I don't know what I'm doing.

Do you guys have any tips on how you would go from meeting the client to closing?

Is it as simple as just figuring out what they want by asking them questions and giving them that or is there more to it?
I recently wanted some cupboards built in my house and I got 2 quotes.

The first guy listened to what I wanted and said; 'OK, I can do all of that for you and it will cost £1500'

The second guy listened to what I thought I wanted, and then asked me loads of questions as to what kind of items I wanted to store, he then talked about building purpose built storage areas for my stuff, he then told me it will cost upwards of £2500.

I went with the second guy, final cost £4350 - I couldn't be happier.

Take heed grasshopper.
 
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AlexLegault

AlexLegault

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Don't over think it...

Have the mindset that you're doing them a favor and providing a solution that they need. It doesn't matter if they know it or not, just have a casual conversation about what you can do and focus on building the relationship.

Try not to talk too much, let them do the talking and break their weak points down, and then address their points and how you can help them.
I feel like I needed to hear. I tend to overthink a lot, and it's gotten me far but when it comes to "in the moment" situations, I need to let go and go with the flow a little more I think.

Great advice, thank you!
 
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AlexLegault

AlexLegault

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Make it as conversational as possible... Make it very clear you want to find a way to create value for him/her and work together to find that win-win mutually advantageous sweet spot where everyone goes home happy. Be open to concessions, reasonable and easy to work with. You will be surprised how easy sales can be when you are just open, honest, and look at things from their perspective.

Formal presentations done incorrectly can make you look like a chump. Off the cuff is better 90 percent of the time. It keeps you agile and arguably better prepared.

Best of luck! I hope this helps.
Awesome, yeah I think I'd even feel like a "chump" if I was using a formal presentation.. I'll try to keep it as personal as possible.

Great advice, thank you!
 
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AlexLegault

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Don't pretend like you know everything when you actually don't. If he asks you something and you actually don't know just say "That is a really great question. I would love to look in to that for you and I will have an answer for you soon". Then actually find out the information and get it to them as soon as you can.

BS comes off as false and will kill any future interactions in a heartbeat.
Good point, I'll keep that in mind. Thank you!
 

minivanman

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I guess my question is.... do you know the product you are selling? If you do, just go in relaxed and do what a good salesman does..... sell. If you don't know the product, why are you trying to sell it before you know it? You either feel it or ya don't. And if you don't know what 'it' is, then you don't. Now that's not saying you might not be nervous but don't start listening to yourself talk and the nervousness will go away after the first few words. Just focus on the product.
 

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Stargazer

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It's going to be my first sales meeting (I went for one today but my mentor/boss basically did it for me) and I don't want to seem like I don't know what I'm doing.
So what did he do?

Probably a good starting point if it is his company and he is good at getting clients.

Dan
 

Dwight Schrute

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Don't be needy, and don't be afraid to refer him to the competition if
theirs seems like a better fit for him.

Keep cool.
Even if you end up not getting the deal, you'll walk out more experienced
and hopefully learned something.

You can't lose!
 

Patrickg

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Closing is very Hollywood. I know I'm repeating but for emphasize ... listen.

If you offer the right product, right person , right time they will close themselves.
 

Andy Black

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Don’t go in “trying to close”. Instead, go in trying to find out how you can help them.

I’m always genuinely excited to find out more about what people do, what their main problems are, and whether I can help them or not.

In my mind I’m just meeting people “for a coffee”. It’s conversational and natural. I’m building a relationship, not trying to “close a prospect”.

I’m also trying to find out whether I want to work with this person, and they’re trying to do that with me.


For me “Sales is a screening process”, not a persuading process.

Feck “Always be closing.”



The most important things are to show up on time, have manners, and do what you said you’ll do. Technical competence is way lower down the pecking order than people think.

Because “people buy from people”.

*** Be the kind of person they want to buy from. ***



Another big tip is to know when to stfu. Be comfortable with silence and don’t rush in to fill it.



This 15 minute video might have some tips for you:

Here an actual (hour long) call I had with a prospect who turned into a client. It’s slightly unnatural at the end where I dragged it out a bit longer than normal because I knew I was recording it. I thought I might have overdone it at the end but he still signed up:
 

Late Bloomer

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I agree with all the great advice in this thread. Have your pen and notepad handy. Ask and learn!

What is the prospect's situation now? What would they like to have as their future situation? What's been challenging for them to get there? What have they tried before and how did that work out for them? If they get this done, how much will be it worth to their business success? If they don't get this done, what other problems will tag along with it?

These questions are not for a confrontational interrogation, but just as natural things to ask, if you care about someone enough to want to know what matters to them and how it's going.

If asked for a price quote before you know enough, say you need to learn more, so you can make sure you're directly on target for them rather than just throwing out a number. If you have general pricing you can say that as soon as asked, such as "this is around $750 to 2,000 per month, and I can get more specific when I know more about your exact needs."

By the end of the meeting, you should know if you could really help them. If not, say so! If you could, point out what you see as the most useful things you could do for them. If you have standard pricing, that's the time to discuss it. If you make custom quotes, ask if the prospect would like a proposal. If you got them something later tonight or first thing tomorrow, would this be a good time for them to seriously consider it? Or would it just clutter up their desk right now?

If it is a good time for them, write up the proposal and send it. If you don't work by custom proposal, send a nice short thank you note for the opportunity to meet with them. Either way, say you'll have a quick follow up call in the next day or two to find out what they decide. Then make that call, again with no pressure, just open curiosity to learn how they see their world now.

The goal is to build a constructive business relationship that is based on the fact that you are interested to see them succeed. If your specific quote or proposal or service could help with that, you offer it. If it's not on the best path you can see for them, you don't offer it. The goal is clarity and respect today, not necessarily a sale today.
 

Andy Black

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Client no showed.
Just thought I'd say... They're not a client until the money is actually in your account.

"Sales is a screening process." - Both ways!


Also, another great tip I was given was that your job is to find out as soon as possible if they person sees the value in what you do or just the cost.

(Both tips credited to Blaise Brosnan.)


You might find this thread useful:
 

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Andy Black

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If you offer the right product, right person , right time they will close themselves.
Nice. I like to say that sales happen when you get the right person to the right offer at the right time. Mind you, I say that when I'm selling people on paid search. Haha.
 
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AlexLegault

AlexLegault

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Just thought I'd say... They're not a client until the money is actually in your account.

"Sales is a screening process." - Both ways!


Also, another great tip I was given was that your job is to find out as soon as possible if they person sees the value in what you do or just the cost.

(Both tips credited to Blaise Brosnan.)


You might find this thread useful:
"potential" client, haha. Good point though.

Thanks for the sharing the thread as well
 

Andy Black

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"potential" client, haha. Good point though.

Thanks for the sharing the thread as well
I’m sure a lot of people know this story...

The one where you do work for your new “client”...

Where they haven't paid you yet...

Maybe because you’ll get “sweat equity”...

Maybe because “Oh, I thought accounts had already paid you. Let me chase that up.”...



Guess what?

“Money can’t be in two places at once.” (Blaise Brosnan)


When the money isn’t in your account, it’s in their account.

They are NOT a client until the money is actually in your account.
 

ay47

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Ok. I’ll also take a crack at this. This is your first meeting. The goal should be the ferret out their pains.

If they are looking at your product, they want it to solve something. No one wakes up in the morning and says “I think I need a website”. They want it to attract more customers. Why do they want it now? Are their competitors doing it? Are they falling behind?

If this is B2B, understand the decision maker’s career aspirations as well. Is he a climber or content to stay where he is?

All of this information will come in handy for the close.
 
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AlexLegault

AlexLegault

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Ok. I’ll also take a crack at this. This is your first meeting. The goal should be the ferret out their pains.

If they are looking at your product, they want it to solve something. Pp don’t want a website, they want it to attract more customers for example. Why do they want it now? Are their competitors doing it? Are they falling behind?

If this is B2B, understand the decision maker’s career aspirations as well. Is he a climber or content to stay where he is?

All of this information will come in handy for the close.
You're definitely on point. Those are things I've heard them say before.

"I don't need it" or "I'm happy with what I have".

I'll keep that information in mind,

Thank you!
 

Roli

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Client no showed.. That's 2 in a row now. Wtf.
That's probably what the guy who offered me the cheaper cupboards would say when he discovered I went for the more expensive option...

I don't know what product you're selling, however if you don't get the potential client to buy into the value, then they will never show up to a meeting.

Ask them what shape their 'stuff' is, and then tell them how you can bend your product to fit it perfectly.
 

Andy Black

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That's probably what the guy who offered me the cheaper cupboards would say when he discovered I went for the more expensive option...

I don't know what product you're selling, however if you don't get the potential client to buy into the value, then they will never show up to a meeting.

Ask them what shape their 'stuff' is, and then tell them how you can bend your product to fit it perfectly.
This is a good point.

First you have to sell them on meeting you.
 

Artie Bernaducci

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So I've got a meeting tomorrow with my first potential client and I'm not sure how to approach it or how the process goes.

It's going to be my first sales meeting (I went for one today but my mentor/boss basically did it for me) and I don't want to seem like I don't know what I'm doing.

Do you guys have any tips on how you would go from meeting the client to closing?

Is it as simple as just figuring out what they want by asking them questions and giving them that or is there more to it?
Hey Alex, First congrats on your first potential client!

Remember the meeting is a process NOT an event.

The "close" is the natural result of how you seamlessly start at the beginning, continue in the middle and finish in the the end.

Take a deep breath and remember you are there as the expert helping him find a solution that your product will deliver.

I am going to butcher this but do you know the old sales story:

A man wants a HOLE. He goes to the store to buy a drill. He doesn't want the drill. He wants the HOLE.

Please report back how it went!

GOOD LUCK!
 
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AlexLegault

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Hey Alex, First congrats on your first potential client!

Remember the meeting is a process NOT an event.

The "close" is the natural result of how you seamlessly start at the beginning, continue in the middle and finish in the the end.
Great advice, thank you!

And as for the story, I think you... Nailed it...





Oh c'mon.
 

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